Medicine Bow Boondoggle - Episode 035

Wilderness Podcast episode with Adam Rissien & Connie Wilbert

Medicine Bow Boondoggle | Adam Rissien & Connie Wilbert | Wild Earth Guardians & The Sierra Club | Ep. 035

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Connie Gilbert - Sierra Club Wyoming

Adam Rissien - Wild Earth Guardians

Release Date: June 30th, 2020

In this episode, I speak with Adam Rissien of Wild Earth Guardians and Connie Wilbert of the Sierra Club about a massive Forest Service proposal to cut hundreds of thousands of acres of trees (including 80,000 acres in roadless areas!) in the Medicine Bow National forest in Wyoming called the LaVA Project. We talk about Adam and Connie’s organizations and backgrounds, the scale and scope of the LaVA project, its impacts, the harmful effects of road building on the ecosystem, lack of environmental analysis and oversight, similarities to the Four Forests Initiative in Arizona, rewriting the rules of the National Environmental Policy Act to allow for ambiguity, history of fires and logging on the Medicine Bow National Forest, how we should be managing our forests, the false promises of “Forest Heath” initiatives, climate change, forest resiliency and the Forest Service burying scientific information in support of their motives.  

Connie's Bio

Connie Wilbert, Director of Sierra Club Wyoming Chapter, grew up in Riverton Wyoming and has lived in Laramie since the 1980s.  She holds Bachelor of Science degrees in zoology and botany and a Master of Science degree in wildlife biology.  Before coming to Sierra Club, she worked as a habitat biologist for the Wyoming Game and Fish Department, and as an energy and legislative policy advocate for several non-profits.  Connie is an avid outdoorswoman who enjoys hiking, backpacking, hunting, and exploring undeveloped public lands.  She is dedicated to working to protect Wyoming's natural environment, to advance social and racial justice, and to protect our climate future, issues which are inextricably linked and interdependent.  

Adam's Bio

Adam Rissien is WildEarth Guardians' ReWilding Advocate who leads an initiative to restore wildness to public lands scarred by decades of exploitation and mismanagement, and to reconnect wildlife habitat and waterways across the American West through advocacy, education, and the effective use of the law. Adam earned a MS in Environmental Studies at the University of Montana, and resides in Missoula with his wife and son. 

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